Super Slide, Royal Arches Area 5.9
Avg time to climb route: 3-5 hours
Approach time: 10 minutes
Descent time: 1 hour
Number of pitches: 5
Height of route: 500'
OverviewSuper Slide ascends mostly well-protected and sustained 5.7 to 5.8 hand cracks. After a few wandering approach pitches, the bulk of the route follows tasty crack systems in an excellent exposed position. The moves are consistently fun with an exceptional finishing crack. This is a good introduction to 5.9 multi-pitch climbs. You can pull through all cruxes on gear except on the second pitch.
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HistoryFA: Gene Drake and Rex Spaith, 1971.
StrategyMost climbers rope up for the standard 5.2 start. For more climbing, start on Trial By Fire (5.8) followed by two pitches of wandering and mungy 4th and moderate 5th class with bolted belays.
The only poorly protected part of the climb comes on the second pitch. At the top of this pitch, manage the rope carefully or you may drop rocks on your belayer.
Now the climb gets good. The next three pitches become gradually harder as you alternate between liebacking, stemming, and straight-in jams. All the belay stations were recently rebolted by the American Safe Climbing Association. The final 40 feet of the last pitch are gorgeous.
On the last rappel of the descent, consider setting a toprope on Rupto Pac (5.11c) for some delicate slab practice.
RetreatRetreat by rappelling with two 50m or 60m ropes.
ApproachFrom the northeast corner of the Ahwahnee parking lot, take the hikers’ trail east. After 250 feet, just before a stream crossing (may be dry in summer and fall), locate a climbers’ trail on the left. Follow this for 100 feet then ti the base of the wall and skirt the base up and to the left for another few hundred feet to another obvious 4th class corner on the right.
DescentRappel the route with two 50m or 60m ropes. At Pitch 3, rappel straight down to a bushy tree and then to the ground.
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